A dig at bad roads in film poster triggers cyber war

Gutters in focus: The poster of the Malayalam movie Nnaa Thaan Case Kodu.

Gutters in focus: The poster of the Malayalam movie Nnaa Thaan Case Kodu. | Photo Credit: specai arrangement

An advertisement of Nnaa Thaan Case Kodu, the latest Malayalam flick acted and produced by Kunchacko Boban and directed by Ratheesh Balakrishnan Poduval, kicked up a social media storm on the film’s release on Thursday.

The advertisement published in all mainstream newspapers chose to give a spin and urged viewers to make it to theatres despite the potholes on roads. With the raging row over the sorry state of roads and whether the roads maintained by the State government agencies or the Centre were the worst, the advertisement assumed political hues quite spectacularly triggering a war of words along ideological lines on social media.

Film’s theme

That the film’s trailer had clear reference to a pothole that was overlooked in the melee. “The film deals with a contemporary subject and the advertisement was designed to capture that. There was no other intention. Any ad is designed to maximise its reach and this one served that purpose,” said Mr. Poduval.

He said that no newspaper had turned down the ad and that the ones criticising it now are unlikely to be speaking for any political party. Ultimately, any publicity is good publicity, he added.

Social media handles of many people, mostly identified as Left sympathisers, took the ad as a dig at the LDF government and came out all guns blazing. Some of them said that they will not watch the movie in theatres but will rather wait for its release on OTT platforms, while some others clamoured for its illegal release on Telegram. There were even calls for outright boycott of the movie.

A set of counter posts and comments, including by those suspected to be affiliated to the Right wing, emerged shortly as they mocked the critics of the ad asking whether their protest wouldn’t go waste if the potholes along the way to theatres happen to be on roads maintained by the Centre.

‘No politics’

Earlier, emerging after watching the movie with his family in a theatre in the city, Mr. Boban said that the ad wasn’t targeted at any political party.

The incidents following an accident involving a pothole are central to the movie. In fact, the movie is based on an incident happened in Tamil Nadu and not even in Kerala. Anyway, Kerala always had its share of potholes and the film being an art form just threw light on it in a general way, he said.

Meanwhile, genuine film enthusiasts were least bothered about the controversy but rather preferred to watch the movie.

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2022 4:53:04 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/a-dig-at-bad-roads-in-film-poster-triggers-cyber-war/article65757745.ece